Sunday, August 7, 2011

The Great Cake Debate

To use a box mix or to make it from scratch?  I have struggled with this question for a few months - since I really got into baking.  I don't want to be judgy, but I do judge box cakes as really easy and not enough effort.  But then I screw up so many cakes because of the chemistry of them that I have to come a conclusion on this debate, with the help of two friends, Julie & Tricia.  We were baking cupcakes and I opened the floor to this discussion.  One of them said that as long as it doesn't taste like a box cake, who cares!  I agree completely.  And who knows, maybe I will revisit this again in the future when I have more confidence with the chemistry side of cooking.

Which brings me to the second part - how to modify the box cake to my liking.  I have a few different ideas that I have swiped off the web.

  1. From Kevin & Amanda - Amanda's Best Chocolate Cake EVER.  Matt made this for my birthday a few years ago and it was delicious! I love it because it is Devil's Food Cake, sour cream, & jell-o pudding.  It was so very moist.
  2. Then there is Lizzy from Your Cup of Cake.  She makes every variety of cupcake she can think of, so the list just keeps growing.  Most of her cakes start with Devil's Food cake mix and then she always modifies the liquids and add-ins.  Some of my favorites have been Nutella, Oreo, and Andes Mint.  I have tried more of her recipes than anyone else.  
After eating that many cupcakes I think I have a pretty good idea of what I like the most in my cakes.  So I am creating my master recipe for chocolate cake.

  • Devil’s Food Cake Mix
  • 3 eggs
  • ½ cup oil
  • ¼ cup milk
  • ½ cup water
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla 
  • 1 cup sour cream
 This recipe has given me the best cake.  It also gets better with age.  It becomes more dense (which I cannot imagine being actually possible).  I love it and could eat it all day long - if it wouldn't make me ridiculously obese.  Just saying.

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